Header graphic for print

E. coli Blog

Surveillance & Analysis on E. coli News & Outbreaks

Kids Sick with E. coli in North Carolina

The Davidson County Health Department is investigating reports of illness in three children likely due to E. coli infection, the agency said this afternoon.

Two Tyro Middle School students have been hospitalized with recent bouts of severe bloody diarrhea. It is reported that they suffer from hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).  A case of E. coli has been identified in a third child who hasn’t been hospitalized and doesn’t attend the same school as the Tyro students, the Health Department says.

“We are asking anyone in the community who has been sick during the month of December with severe or bloody diarrhea to please call the Davidson County Health Department at (336) 242-2300. If you are still sick, please seek medical care.” said Monecia Thomas, the Davidson County Health Department health director.

E. coli are naturally occurring bacteria that normally live in the intestines of people and animals. While most E. coli are harmless, some produce Shiga toxin.

Shiga toxin-producing E. coli are found in animals, especially ruminant livestock, such as sheep, deer, goats and cows. Transmission can occur following contact with these animals or their feces or following consumption of undercooked meats or unpasteurized foods or drinks, according to the Health Department.

North Carolina has Two in Hospital with E. coli

The Davidson County Health Department has received reports of two middle school students who have been diagnosed with apparent E. coli, officials announced Saturday.

According to a news release from the Davidson County Health Department, it has received reports of two middle school students who have been hospitalized with a recent history of severe, bloody diarrhea.

“Our sincerest thoughts go out to the families of these two students who have experienced illness,” said Monecia Thomas, Davidson County Health Department health director. “We want the community to know that if they have been sick during the month of December with severe abdominal cramps and diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, to please call the Davidson County Health Department at 242-2300 and if you are still sick, to please seek medical care.”

Both of the hospitalized students have Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome, a serious complication often caused by E. coli infection. A spokeswoman with the health department confirmed to The Dispatch that the students are from Tyro Middle School.

Trader Joes E. coli Outbreak Tops 33

A total of 33 persons infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O157:H7 were reported from four states.

The number of ill persons identified in each state was as follows: Arizona (1), California (28), Texas (1), and Washington (3).

32% of ill persons were hospitalized. Two ill persons developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths were reported.

The STEC O157:H7 PFGE pattern combination in this outbreak was new to the PulseNet database.

Epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicated that consumption of two ready-to-eat salads, Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken and Mexicali Salad with Chili Lime Chicken, produced by Glass Onion Catering and sold at Trader Joe’s grocery store locations, was the likely source of this outbreak of STEC O157:H7 infections.

On November 10, 2013, Glass Onion Catering voluntarily recalled numerous ready-to-eat salads and sandwich wrap products that may be contaminated with STEC O157:H7.

Read the list of recalled products regulated by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

Read the list of recalled products regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

3rd California E. coli Lawsuit Filed in Glass Onion Trader Joes Outbreak

Melanie Dunstan became the third California resident to file a lawsuit against Glass Onion Catering this week.  The lawsuit alleges that the plaintiff fell ill with an E. coli O157:H7 infection after eating a salad made by Glass Onion Catering and sold by Trader Joe’s in early November of 2013.  Ms. Dunstan is represented by Seattle-based Marler Clark and San Diego-based Gordon & Holmes.  This is the third lawsuit filed against Glass Onion Catering by the two firms.

In a complaint filed in Santa Cruz County Superior Court (Case No. CV178260), Ms. Dunstan alleges that she purchased and consumed a Glass Onion catering salad from a Trader Joe’s retail outlet on November 4, 2013.  Court documents state that she fell ill with symptoms of E. coli infection, including bloody diarrhea, on November 7 and sought medical treatment on November 11.  The plaintiff alleges that she later learned she had tested positive for E. coli and that she continues to suffer from the symptoms of her E. coli infection.

“Through this case, we intend to show that the salad my client purchased was contaminated with a harmful pathogen,” said attorney Bill Marler, managing partner of Marler Clark.

Glass Onion Catering voluntarily recalled numerous ready-to-eat salads and sandwich wrap products for potential E. coli contamination [1] after public health officials had identified the products as the source of an E. coli outbreak among residents of several states, including California.[2]

“E. coli infections are not pretty,” Marler continued.  “Most people who have had one say they wouldn’t wish one on their worst enemy.”

1. See, “California Firm Recalls Grilled Chicken Salad Products Due To Possible E. coli O157:H7 Contamination.”  United States Department of Agriculture.  November 10, 2013.
And “Atherstone Foods Voluntarily Recalls Salads and Wraps Because of Possible Health Risk.”  U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  November 9, 2013.

2. See, “Multistate Outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 Infections Linked to Ready-to-Eat Salads”.  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  November 21, 2013.

Cloud’s Meats Meat Recalled Due to E. coli

Cloud’s Meats, Inc. is voluntarily recalling beef and pork products possibly contaminated with E. coli. following positive test results for non-0157 Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STECs) in samples of items produced mid-November. The samples were taken during routine testing conducted by the Missouri Department of Agriculture’s Meat and Poultry Inspection Program November 14 and analyzed by the Department’s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory in Springfield.

The Jasper County meat processor is voluntarily recalling approximately 1450 pounds of meat, including ground beef and pork, sausage and steaks.

The recalled products are marked with the code “318″ and labeled with Clouds Meats Inc. or Cloud’s Smoked Meats. Recalled items include 1052 pounds of ground beef, 158 pounds of pork sausage, 152 pounds of ground pork, and 96 pounds of Tenderized Minute Steak and Tenderized Round Steak.

2 with HUS, 94 Sickened by E. coli at Arizona Federico’s

The Maricopa County Department of Public Health (MCDPH)’s report of its investigation of an Escherichia coli O157:H7 outbreak in which 94 ill persons were identified was released today.

According to the report, the source of the outbreak was traced to a single location of Federico’s Mexican Restaurant chain located at 13132 W. Camelback Rd., Litchfield Park, with exposure dates occurring from July 18-30, 2013. A case-control study of 180 persons was performed, and environmental samples were collected on multiple dates.

The findings from the environmental samples and the case-control study both implicated contaminated lettuce as a probable source of the outbreak and vehicle for the E. coli that caused illness.  Midwest Beef supplied beef and produce to Federico’s Mexican Restaurant.

The report further found:

It is notable that the food supplier that provides produce to this restaurant also provides food to other Federico’s locations in Phoenix, as well as other food establishments in the valley. No confirmed cases of illness were recorded from other local restaurants. This point source exposure could have occurred due to contamination at any one of several levels. It could have occurred at the restaurant from an ill food handler, although no employee illnesses were reported from the restaurant during the month of July and this would be a large number of cases to be contracted from a single ill food handler. Cross contamination from another contaminated food source at the restaurant – such as beef, for example – is also a possibility. It is also possible that this restaurant received a small, highly contaminated batch of lettuce that did not go to any other facilities.

Lawsuit names Glass Onion as E. coli Source

As of November 19, 2013, a total of 32 persons infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 have been reported from four states.

The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Arizona (1), California (27), Texas (1), and Washington (3).

32% of ill persons have been hospitalized. Two ill persons have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths have been reported.

Epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicate that consumption of two ready-to-eat salads, Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken and Mexicali Salad with Chili Lime Chicken, produced by Glass Onion Catering and sold at Trader Joe’s grocery store locations, are one likely source of this outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections.

Download Lawsuit Here.

E. coli:  Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The E. coli lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of E. coli and other foodborne illness infections and have recovered over $600 million for clients. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products.  The law firm has brought E. coli lawsuits against such companies as Jack in the Box, Dole, ConAgra, Cargill, and Jimmy John’s.  We have proudly represented such victims as Brianne Kiner, Stephanie Smith and Linda Rivera.

If you or a family member became ill with an E. coli infection or HUS after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark E. coli attorneys for a free case evaluation.

2 with HUS, 30 others sickened by E. coli Linked to Ready to Eat Salad in Arizona (1), California (27), Texas (1), and Washington (3)

The CDC announced as of November 19, 2013, a total of 32 persons infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O157:H7 have been reported from four states.

The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Arizona (1), California (27), Texas (1), and Washington (3).

32% of ill persons have been hospitalized. Two ill persons have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths have been reported.

The STEC O157:H7 PFGE pattern combination in this outbreak is new to the PulseNet database.

Epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicate that consumption of two ready-to-eat salads, Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken and Mexicali Salad with Chili Lime Chicken, produced by Glass Onion Catering and sold at Trader Joe’s grocery store locations, are one likely source of this outbreak of STEC O157:H7 infections.

On November 10, 2013, Glass Onion Catering voluntarily recalled numerous ready-to-eat salads and sandwich wrap products that may be contaminated with STEC O157:H7.

Read the list of recalled products regulated by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

Read the list of recalled products regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

More E. coli Illnesses Linked to Gort’s Cheese

This Notice has been updated to include one additional case of E.coli O157:H7 in British Columbia and to indicate the closing of the investigation.

Since our last update, one additional case has been reported in British Columbia as part of this investigation. This is not a recent case; the individual became ill in late September. In total, 28 cases were reported as part of this outbreak. Collaborative investigation efforts by provincial and federal health authorities and food regulatory partners confirmed that certain unpasteurised cheese products manufactured by Gort’s Gouda Cheese Farm in Salmon Arm, British Columbia, were identified as the source of the illnesses.

Given no new cases have occurred since the end of September, this outbreak appears to be over. The outbreak investigation is now closed.

For a list of affected cheese products, check the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s website. Do not eat any of the recalled product. Check your refrigerator and if you have any of the recalled product in your home, return it to the point of purchase or throw it out.

The Public Health Agency of Canada, in collaboration with provincial/territorial partners, will continue to monitor for and investigate any new cases of E. coli that may be related to this outbreak as part of its routine surveillance activities.

A total of 28 cases of illness were reported as part of this outbreak; 13 in British Columbia, 10 in Alberta, 2 in Saskatchewan, 2 in Manitoba and 1 in Quebec. More information about the epidemiological investigation is also available.

More information about products that have been recalled and how the investigation has unfolded is available on the CFIA website.

Arizona, California and Washington E. coli Outbreak

As of November 10, 2013, a total of 26 persons infected with the outbreak strain of STEC O157:H7 have been reported from three states.

The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Arizona (1), California (22), and Washington (3).

28% of ill persons have been hospitalized. Two ill persons have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), and no deaths have been reported.

The STEC O157:H7 PFGE pattern in this outbreak is new to the PulseNet database.

Epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicate that consumption of two ready-to-eat salads, Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken and Mexicali Salad with Chili Lime Chicken, produced by Glass Onion Catering and sold at Trader Joe’s grocery store locations, are one likely source of this outbreak of STEC O157:H7 infections.

On November 10, 2013, Glass Onion Catering voluntarily recalled numerous ready-to-eat salads and sandwich wrap products that may be contaminated with STEC O157:H7.

Read the list of recalled products regulated by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

Read the list of recalled products regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).